Harvest Moon Heralds Fall
This is going to be a long one, so get comfortable. Did you feel the switch this weekend? There was a bit of a chill in the air, sure. And the rainy dreary days of late certainly alluded toward a post summer feel. The fun part of this is that down at Volantes we are getting into the holiday spirit. Halloween is just 30 days away! While this used to mark a real change for us, this year we are really excited and confused that on November 1st we will still be open and selling as much homegrown and local food that we can get our hands on.
With a month of regular season to go we still have a lot to talk about. The kitchen has really made the switch to fall. The cider doughnuts are quickly becoming town-famous. Don’t pretend you can avoid them for long, give in to the temptation and stop in for a cup of coffee a doughnut or six, available singly or ready packed by the half-dozen for 99 cents or 4.99 respectively.
The bakery isn’t the only kitchen department reveling in fall tastes, the ice cream stand is continuing its apple crisp and caramel apple offerings along with their new hours. Chef Todd’s kitchen has also made the switch, offering the return of comfort foods to the prepared food section, like roasted butternut squash and house cured bacon and bourbon meatloaf. For the latest on his offerings be sure to like Volante Farms on Facebook, where VFChef updates his specials as they happen.
In the greenhouse, fall is in full bloom. there are thousands of just cracking into color mums ready to brighten your dulling landscape. in hues of pink, red, rust, orange, yellow, white and more the colors of these hardy mums can enhance the edges of your yard for the dark weeks to come.
Between the greenhouse and farmstand you will find hundreds of pumpkins and winter squashes, as well as hay bales, straw bales, indian corn and bunched corn stalks, plus many of the fall and Halloween decorations you want to finish off your displays.
In the field we are picking the first of our fall cauliflower and broccoli. You will start to see more of it on the stand every day as yields increase. The broccoli is on the rise, and cauliflower will soon be coming in to its full glory of multiple color varieties. In addition to three types of white cauliflower, we grow two types of purple, one being the violet queen available now, purple Graffiti a slower and more true cauliflower, green Romanesco- a spiky Italian varietal, and Cheddar a yellow-orange vitamin boost.
You may have noticed the tomato display has been lacking in heft lately. It’s true our tomato crop has bid adieu, but we are still bringing in some relatively good fruit from area farms and certainly soon hothouses. This does mean however that green tomato season is briefly here. We will pick them as long as the plants maintain them, so if you have been holding off on a pickling or frying recipe, you can get your green rock hard fruit now while they last!
One other new crop for us this year was gourds. Farmers with lots of extra space have long grown these decorative nick knacks, and we decided to join the crowd. As it turns out you get a bushel or so of gourds of a handful of measly plants, so the yield was actually pretty impressive.
The good news is we had a full moon this weekend and no frost, which means we will keep picking corn while it lasts!. We are picking our last block now, Reflection is the variety, and we will have it as long as it lasts. Our traditional Columbus Day plan to still have corn may work yet. But don’t be lazy, if you are going to miss sweet homegrown corn like ours, plan it into every meal you cook this week for it will soon be gone for another 7-8 months.
In the farmstand, new and exciting foods are rolling in all the time. This week there are at least 5 new apple varieties hitting the floor, to bring the total available now to over 25!
Check the apple page regularly to see what’s new! And of course we are still taking registration for our 2012 Apple Pie Baking Contest. Sign up below on last weeks blog post, or with any of our cashiers in the stand.